African Visions: Literary Images, Political Change, and Social Struggle in Contemporary Africa

By Cheryl B. Mwaria; Silvia Federici et al. | Go to book overview

15
Socialist-Oriented Literature in Postcolonial Africa: Retrospective and Prospective

Alamin M. Mazrui

This chapter is intended to be a broad reflection on where socialist-inspired writing in post-colonial Africa might be going as we approach the year 2000; but in the process, I also discuss some of the foundations of this literature. Following Emmanuel Ngara, socialist literature can be defined as one that reflects "the class structure of society and presents social struggles from the point of view of class and promote the ideal of socialism" ( 1985: 17). The existence of a socialist-inspired literature in Africa shall be taken for granted for the purposes of this essay since the socialist thrust of many of the texts discussed here has already been the subject of analysis in the works of a number of literary critics, including Emmanuel Ngara ( 1985), George Gugelberger ( 1985), Chidi Amuta ( 1986, 1989) and Udenta O. Udenta ( 1993).

Of more direct concern for us here are two seemingly conflicting predictions on the destiny of socialist inspired literature in Africa. We have, on the one hand, the position of Udenta to the effect that "The most significant direction of the African literary process is the revolutionary direction, sustained in virtually all parts of the continent" ( 1993: xxi). This revolutionary direction is projected in terms of Marxist dialectical materialism, and African literature is deemed to be on a progressive path from its apologist beginnings, through intermediate liberalist, negationist and critical stages, to a final revolutionary, Marxist peak.

On the other hand, there is the position of Ogembo who, based on his observations of the developments in Kenya's literary scene, concludes--at least with regard to this East African nation--that what he calls "post-Ngûgî" fiction--that is, the radical fiction of revolutionary commitment--is increasingly moving away from the kinds of political concerns that would normally sustain the growth of a socialist-inspired literature ( 1995: 97-98).

-219-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this book

This book has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this book

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
African Visions: Literary Images, Political Change, and Social Struggle in Contemporary Africa
Table of contents

Table of contents

Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen
/ 282

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.